What Counts As Proof of Residency In Pennsylvania?

In Pennsylvania, tax records, utility bills, mortgage documents, lease agreements, and weapons permits all qualify as proof of residency.
Written by Natalie Todoroff
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
background
When
registering a car
in
Pennsylvania
, tax records, lease agreements, mortgage documents, utility bills, and weapons permits all qualify as proof of residency. 
The DMV is, frankly, nobody’s idea of a good time. Best case scenario? You’re in and out in less than an hour. Worst case? You take your ticket, wait for what feels like an eternity, they finally call your number….and you don’t have the forms you need to renew your
license
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What documents can you use as proof of residency in Pennsylvania?

If you’re looking to get a Pennsylvania driver’s license, you must provide official documents that prove both your identity and Pennsylvania residency. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation divides these documents into two lists: documents in List A serve for proof of identity, and those in List B work as proof of residency:
  • List A: Birth certificate with raised seal, valid US passport, certificate of US citizenship (USCIS Form N-560) or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (DOS Form FS-240), Certificate of Naturalization (USCIS Form N-550 or N-570)
  • List B: Tax records, lease agreements, mortgage documents, W-2 form, current weapons permit, current utility bills like water, gas, electric, cable, etc. 
For Pennsylvania residents over the age of 18, you will need to provide one document from List A, two from List B, and your Social Security card to apply for a driver’s license. If you are a Pennsylvania resident under the age of 18, you need just one document from List A and your Social Security card
The qualifications for new Pennsylvania residents are the same, except you must also bring your old or expired out-of-state driver’s license to your DMV appointment.
If your name is different from what’s listed on a List A document or on your Social Security card, you will also need to bring your marriage certificate, divorce decree, or court order name change document. Or, if you’re looking to have your gender officially changed on your driver’s license, fill out
Form DL-32
with your certified, amended birth certificate with raised seal.   
Now, the million dollar question: what about Real ID? Although you can still drive in Pennsylvania without upgrading to a Real ID, the Department of Transportation recommends that you get your Real ID before the new rules about boarding commercial domestic flights, entering federal buildings, and military bases go into effect on May 3rd, 2023
Thankfully, for Real ID, the rules are much the same as they are for a driver’s license. In order to upgrade to a Real ID in Pennsylvania, you will need one document proving your identity, your Social Security card, two proofs of Pennsylvania residency, and (if applicable) proof of all legal name changes. 
  • Proof of identity for Real ID: Birth certificate with raised seal, valid US passport, certificate of US citizenship (USCIS Form N-560) or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (DOS Form FS-240), Certificate of Naturalization (USCIS Form N-550 or N-570), Unexpired Employment Authorization Card (EAD) issued by DHS; Forms I-766 or Form 1-688B, Valid, Unexpired Permanent Resident Card I-551 Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) Issued by DHS or INS, Unexpired foreign passport with an unexpired US visa affixed, and an I-94 indicating temporary evidence of permanent residence
  • Proof of residency for Real ID: Current, unexpired PA driver’s license or photo ID; PA vehicle registration card; auto insurance card; computer-generated utility bill with your name and address; W-2 form; tax records; lease agreements or mortgage documents
  • Proof of legal name change for Real ID: Certified marriage certificate, court order name change document, or divorce decree

What documents do not qualify as proof of residency in Pennsylvania?

Just because someone has your address as one does not mean that the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will accept it as official proof of PA residency. The following documents are not included in List B and therefore cannot be to prove Pennsylvania residency: 
  • Bond receipts
  • Business card
  • Check cashing card
  • Club or fraternal organization membership card
  • College or university ID card
  • Unofficial (i.e. commercially produced) ID card
  • Department of Human Services (DHS) card
  • Fishing license
  • Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) card
  • Handwritten ID or employment card
  • Hunting license
  • Library card
  • Personal mail 
  • Ticket from a traffic citation or arrest
  • Loan papers from an unlicensed financial institution
  • Video club membership card
  • Wallet ID

What qualifies as proof of identity in Pennsylvania?

In Pennsylvania, you can present the following documents as proof of your identity for a driver’s license:
  • Birth certificate with raised seal 
  • Valid US passport 
  • Certificate of US citizenship (USCIS Form N-560)
  • Consular Report of Birth Abroad (DOS Form FS-240)
  • Certificate of Naturalization (USCIS Form N-550 or N-570)
For Real ID, the following documents are also accepted in addition to the ones listed above:
  • Unexpired Employment Authorization Card (EAD) issued by DHS
  • Forms I-766 or Form 1-688B
  • Unexpired Permanent Resident Card I-551 Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) Issued by DHS or INS
  • Unexpired foreign passport with an unexpired US visa affixed
  • I-94 indicating temporary evidence of permanent residence

How to save on Pennsylvania car insurance costs

While you’re thinking about your driver’s license, you should also consider another very important part of safe driving: having a great
car insurance
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